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front cover Disunion, New York Times

The New York Times: Disunion culls modern commentary on the American Civil War from The New York Times’ popular Disunion on-line journal.

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Two articles by Jean Huets are featured: one of Disunion’s most popular articles, “Boxers, Briefs and Battles,” on soldiers’ underwear (and lack thereof) and “Killing Time: Playing Cards in the Civil War.”

Other contributors to the book include Ken Burns, Stephanie McCurry, Adam Goodheart, and Ted Widmer, editor.

The New York Times’ Disunion published hundreds of original articles and won multiple awards, including “Best History Website” from the New Media Institute and the History News Network. Following the chronology of the secession crisis and the Civil War, the contributors to Disunion, who include modern scholars, journalists, historians, and Civil War buffs, offered ongoing daily commentary and assessment of the Civil War as it unfolded.

For the The New York Times: Disunion book, historian Ted Widmer selected more than 100 articles that cover events beginning with Lincoln’s presidential victory through the Emancipation Proclamation. Topics include everything from Walt Whitman’s wartime diary to the bloody guerrilla campaigns in Missouri and Kansas.The book also compiles new essays not published on the Disunion site. Topics include the perspective of African-American slaves and freed men on the war, the secession crisis in the Upper South, the war in the West (that is, past the Appalachians), the war in Texas, the international context, and Civil War–era cartography. Portraits, contemporary etchings, and detailed maps round out the book.

More by Jean Huets on the American Civil War here.


“A true Whitmanian feast—for the intellect as well as for the eyes.” — Ed Folsom, editor Walt Whitman Quarterly

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“A beautiful book of windows onto the life of Walt Whitman…. From the clear ringing prose to the fascinating photographs and colored illustrations of the great poet’s life we find the man anew—standing in his time and looking straight at us. [Huets] has made a book of marvels and I can’t put it down.” — Steve Scafidi, Poet Laureate, Virginia

Explore the fascinating roots of Whitman’s great work, Leaves of Grass: a family harrowed by alcoholism and mental illness; the bloody Civil War; burgeoning, brawling Manhattan and Brooklyn; literary allies and rivals; and his beloved America, racked by disunion even while racing westward. Over 300 color period images immerse the reader in the life and times of Walt Whitman.